Growth in Virologically Suppressed HIV-Positive Children on Antiretroviral Therapy: Individual and Population-level References.
Combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) suppresses viral replication in HIV-infected children. The growth of virologically suppressedchildren on ART has not been well documented. We aimed to develop dynamic reference curves for weight-for-age Z scores (WAZ) and height-for-age Z scores (HAZ).
Children aged <11 years at ART initiation with continuously undetectable viral loads (<400 copies/mL) treated at 7 South African ART programs with routine viral load monitoring were included. We used multilevel models to define trajectories of WAZ and HAZ up to 3 years and developed a web application to monitor trajectories in individual children.
A total of 4876 children were followed for 7407 person-years. Analyses were stratified by baseline Z scores and age, which were the most important predictors of growth response. The youngest children showed the most pronounced increase in weight and height initially but catch-up growth stagnated after 1-2 years. Three years after starting ART, WAZ ranged from -2.2 [95% prediction interval (PrI), -5.6 to 0.8] in children with baseline age >5 years and Z score less than -3 to 0.0 (95% PrI, -2.7 to 2.4) in children with baseline age <2 years and WAZ greater than -1. For HAZ, the corresponding range was -2.3 (95% PrI, -4.9 to 0.3) in children with baseline age >5 years and Z score less than -3 to 0.3 (95% PrI, -3.1 to 3.4) in children with baseline age 2-5 years and HAZ greater than -1.
We have developed an online tool to calculate reference trajectories in fully suppressed children. The web application could help to define "optimal" growth response and identify children with treatment failure.
Keiser O, Blaser N, Davies MA, Wessa P, Eley B, Moultrie H, Rabie H, Technau KG, Ndirangu J, Garone D, et al. Growth in Virologically Suppressed HIV-Positive Children on Antiretroviral Therapy: Individual and Population-level References. Pediatr Infect Dis J. 2015 Oct;34(10):e254-e259. PubMed PMID: 26192393.